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Liberalization, democracy and economic performance during transition

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  • Fidrmuc, Jan

Abstract

This paper analyzes the inter-relations between economic and political processes during transition in 25 post-communist countries of Central and Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union. The main findings are the following: First, economic liberalization generally has positive effect on growth even when controlling for initial conditions. The effect is U-shaped during the contraction and linear during the recovery, but in both periods complete liberalization is superior to no liberalization. Second, democracy has a negative effect on growth during the contraction, whereas its effect appears insignificant during the recovery. Third, economic performance is a strong determinant of support for the reform in elections: support for the reform falls with unemployment and increases with economic growth, output level relative to 1989, and, surprisingly, inflation. Finally, economic liberalization per se increases opposition against the reform, as the costs of the reform apparently go beyond deteriorating economic performance. The level of democracy, in contrast, increases the support for the reform.

Suggested Citation

  • Fidrmuc, Jan, 2000. "Liberalization, democracy and economic performance during transition," ZEI Working Papers B 05-2000, University of Bonn, ZEI - Center for European Integration Studies.
  • Handle: RePEc:zbw:zeiwps:b052000
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    File URL: https://www.econstor.eu/bitstream/10419/39651/1/311939848.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Brainerd, Elizabeth, 1998. "Winners and Losers in Russia's Economic Transition," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 88(5), pages 1094-1116, December.
    2. Fidrmuc, Jan, 2000. "Political support for reforms: Economics of voting in transition countries," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 44(8), pages 1491-1513, August.
    3. Guillermo A. Calvo & Fabrizio Coricelli, 1993. "Output Collapse in Eastern Europe: The Role of Credit," IMF Staff Papers, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 40(1), pages 32-52, March.
    4. Nauro F. Campos, 1999. "Back to the Future: The Growth Prospects of Transition Economies Reconsidered," CERGE-EI Working Papers wp146, The Center for Economic Research and Graduate Education - Economics Institute, Prague.
    5. Sebastian Edwards, 1991. "Stabilization and Liberalization Policies in Central and Eastern Europe: Lessons From Latin America," NBER Working Papers 3816, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    6. Dethier, Jean-Jacques*Ghanem, Hafez*Zoli, Edda, 1999. "Does democracy facilitate the economic transition : an empirical study of Central and Eastern Europe and the Former Soviet Union," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2194, The World Bank.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Madeeha Gohar Qureshi & Eatzaz Ahmed, 2012. "The Inter-linkages between Democracy and Per Capita GDP Growth: A Cross Country Analysis," PIDE-Working Papers 2012:85, Pakistan Institute of Development Economics.
    2. Nauro F. Campos & Abrizio Coricelli, 2002. "Growth in Transition: What We Know, What We Don't, and What We Should," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 40(3), pages 793-836, September.
    3. Lundström, Susanna, 2002. "Decomposed Effects of Democracy on Economic Freedom," Working Papers in Economics 74, University of Gothenburg, Department of Economics.
    4. de Haan, Jakob & Sturm, Jan-Egbert, 2003. "Does more democracy lead to greater economic freedom? New evidence for developing countries," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 19(3), pages 547-563, September.
    5. Andreas Freytag, 2002. "Accession to EMU and exchange rate policies in Central Europe - decision under institutional constraints," Bank of Estonia Working Papers 2002-1, Bank of Estonia, revised 12 Oct 2002.
    6. Bernd Hayo, 2001. "On Democratization and Economic Conditions in Eastern Europe," Development and Comp Systems 0106001, EconWPA.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Democracy; Economic Liberalization; Economic Performance; voting;

    JEL classification:

    • O11 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Macroeconomic Analyses of Economic Development
    • P26 - Economic Systems - - Socialist Systems and Transition Economies - - - Political Economy
    • P27 - Economic Systems - - Socialist Systems and Transition Economies - - - Performance and Prospects

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